Architecture and our duty to beauty | The Independent

… the case I have been making for beauty as public good rests on the fact that it does not require us to get into controversial disagreements about matters of fine aesthetic judgement. So, it may indeed be true that “beautiful” is not the only positive aesthetic judgement, but when we are concerned with public space, we are not primarily concerned with making those other kinds of judgements. What we’re interested in is simply creating or preserving a shared space that enhances the lives of people who live in it. I might think a building is utterly wonderful but concede…

Faculty and Alumnus Honored with ICAA Acanthus Awards // News // School of Architecture // University of Notre Dame

The Acanthus Awards … honor exemplary student work in classical or traditional design from current students and recent graduates.  School of Architecture alumnus Christopher C. Miller, M. Arch ‘14, received recognition for his thesis project, Market Bridge for Bath:  Fitting Type to Local Character—Professor Richard Economakis was the thesis advisor.  Miller developed a plan for a mixed use neighborhood development in the area surrounding River Avon in the historic city of Bath in England. Source: Faculty and Alumnus Honored with ICAA Acanthus Awards // News // School of Architecture // University of Notre Dame See A Market for Bath:  Fitting Type to…

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Congress for the New Urbanism Illinois Academic Charter Award 2016 for Gowanus: from Resilience to Sustainability

    Judson’s graduate urbanism studio has received the 2016 academic CNU-IL Charter Award!  This makes three years in a row!  Graduate student team: Justin Banda, Kay Havlicek, Tyler Hopwood, Marvin Reyes, Tyler Wade, and Andrew Witek.

The Linguistics of Place Names | JSTOR Daily

Why is this important, to have a place name with a sense of history and meaning? Thomas F. Thornton believes “as linguistic artifacts […], place names tell us something not only about the structure and content of the physical environment itself but also […] toponyms, both by themselves and in the context of narratives, songs, and everyday speech, provide valuable insights into the ways humans experience the world.” Even when we don’t know the language, we can derive certain ideas from the landscape we see around us and the old place names still in use. Consider tri-state names of native…

Humanism and the Urban World: Leon Battista Alberti and the Renaissance City, Caspar Pearson

“Everyone relies on the city,” wrote Leon Battista Alberti, “and all the public services that it contains.” This statement, delivered in such a matter-of-fact manner, indicates the exceptional importance of cities in the society in which Alberti lived. His world was an urban one. He was born in Genoa, grew up in Venice, was educated in Padua and Bologna, and subsequently lived and worked in Rome, Florence, Mantua, Rimini, and Ferrara. Fifteenth-century Italy, divided into a patchwork of city-states, boasted what was arguably the most developed urban society in Europe at the time. Moreover, Italy offered a wide variety of…

If a City Were Perfect, What Would It Look Like? – The New York Times

When Baldassare Castiglione described Urbino in 1506 as a “city in the form of a palace” he would probably have expected his more cultivated readers to catch the allusion to Leon Battista Alberti’s assertion in his “De re aedificatoria” (On the Art of Building) that “the city is like a great house, and the house in its turn a small city.” During his reign between 1444 and 1482, Federico da Montefeltro’s marvelous edifice played host to as much intellectual and artistic activity as entire cities many times Urbino’s size. And Alberti, along with Luciano Laurana, Piero della Francesca and Francesco…

Sprawl is not the problem — Strong Towns

We identify the problem as the Suburban Experiment, which we contrast with the Traditional Development Pattern. Both of these we have defined: Suburban Experiment:The approach to growth and development that has become dominant in North America during the 20th Century. There are two distinguishing characteristics of this approach that differentiate it from the Traditional Development Pattern. They are: (1) New growth happens at a large scale and (2) Construction is done to a finished state; there is no further growth anticipated after the initial construction. Traditional Development Pattern: The approach to growth and development that humans used for thousands of years across…

Jane Jacobs Was Put to the Test in 6 Italian Cities – Next City

In her 1961 book, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, urban sociologist Jane Jacobs proposed four conditions essential to vibrant city life, ideas which were both influential and controversial. Recently, researcher Marco De Nadai and his team at the University of Trento designed a way to test those conditions by mining databases and cell phone records in six Italian cities.RELATED STORIES“Urban Metabolism” Could Beat “Sustainability” in a Buzzword ContestMexico City’s Secret Planning Weapon? Building BridgesNew Big Data Tool to Show How and Why We Move Around CitiesWho Is Designing the 21st-Century City?Spoiler alert: They found her ideas to…

Learning about Life from Wendell Berry | The Washington Institute

I ask another question: what are the conditions for human flourishing? That is another way into these weeks together, listening and learning as we are to this Kentucky farmer and father, husband to his wife and husbander of his land, the one that serious critics call “the most serious essayist in America today.” To press the point, this week I had them read Berry’s essay, “Two Economies,” in which he makes the argument that there are always two economies at work. Lesser economies and a Greater Economy, the former being the economy of a small town or a large city,…